Hiking in Flims
Switzerland  (August, 2008)
Irmi's favorite Swiss ski resort is Flims-Laax, an hour-and-a-half journey by car from our home near Zürich.
In winter, deep snow blankets over two-hundred and twenty kilometers of gently sloping downhill ski trails.
In springtime, a lush green tumble of rolling hills and rushing streams turns the area into a hiker's paradise.
The resort of Flims-Laax is comprised of two separate villages: Flims and Laax.  Our friend, Doris, owns a
weekend apartment located on the outskirts of downtown Flims which she uses during ski holidays in winter
and hiking trips when the weather allows in spring and summer.  The apartment is fully furnished and sleeps
six persons comfortably.  Doris is a generous lady who often invites others to join in on weekend excursions.
On this particular weekend, Doris asked Irmi and I to join her on a day hike in the Foppa region above Flims
Dorf; and we gladly accepted.  Following well-marked paths over a long looping route, we climbed from the
valley floor to to an elevation of approximately 1,420 meters before circling back down again, completing the
distance in five hours.  Afterward, on Doris' sunny terrace, we savoring a well-deserved round of iced tea. 
Hi Everybody!  Let's get started.
Doris on the left; Irmi on the right.
Let's take it real easy in the beginning.  That sun feels pretty warm.
Take advantage of the shade whenever you can find it.
Doris and Irmi leading the way up a small rise and into a forest.
Doris and Irmi negotiating a narrow sloping trail.  Ron seems to be falling farther behind.
Irmi and Doris taking a break halfway to our top point.
Rustic Restaurant on a hillside where we ate lunch out on the terrace.
Leaving the restaurant, we turned right and passed this isolated summer cabin.
How does one purchase a place like this?  It must have been in the same family
 for generations.  See the blue para-glider soaring in the upper right of the photo?
Irmi and Ron, taking a short break.  Irmi is always happy in the great outdoors.
Ron is always happy when performing his favorite exercise:  sitting on a bench.
Ron, inspecting a fast-moving stream, searching for the safest place to cross.
Irmi, inspecting a fast-moving stream, contemplating a quick swim.
Doris, crossing the bridge of no return; from here on, it's all downhill.
Heading back down to the valley floor now, through rolling green hills.
The old huts store grains for animals and provide shelter during inclement weather.
Civilization ahead, one of the outer-most houses of the village.
Almost back down to the village center now, as a para-glider makes a smooth landing.
(Most higher-elevation ski resorts are Mecca's for para-gliders in spring and summer.)
Back down in the Village.  We made it!  Doris and Irmi cross the
street to a restaurant for coffee and "Nuß Torte" (similar to pecan pie).
That's all for now, folks!  See you next time.

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